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HI2021 - Modern Australian History

[Not offered in 2023]

Credit points: 3
Year: 2023
Student Contribution Band: Band 4
Administered by: College of Arts, Society & Education

Australian history is "curious and strange", observed the American author, Mark Twain: "It does not read like history, but the most beautiful lies". According to the storyline of the Australian Legend, Australians are possessed of a spirit of democracy and egalitarianism. This led to the establishment of a "workingman's paradise" by the late nineteenth century and, in turn, the Commonwealth of Australia which was formally promulgated on the first day of the twentieth century. The serious business of being Australian from 1901 was to govern a "nation for a continent" while managing a "continent for a nation". Our subject, "Modern Australian History", traces the cultural, social, political and economic forces that shaped the twentieth century in Australia. We focus on key themes and influences, including: lands and original peoples, immigration and settlement, race and ethnicities, human rights and abuses, foreign relations and wars, booms and busts, cities and the bush, science and innovation, medicine and health, and intellects and emotions. We examine the narratives of nation and the "dark side of the dreaming".

Learning Outcomes

  • demonstrate appropriate analytical skills in research and writing history, specifically the history of modern Australia in the twentieth century, leading to competence in the use and interpretation of historical resources and archives, including digital archives;
  • deconstruct historical representations, storylines, and narratives, leading to an ability to identify different forms and types of cultural construction and their consumption, leading to greater self-awareness and critical skills in the analysis of twentieth-century Australian history;
  • interpret from cultural, social, political or economic perspectives, leading to an ability to recognise and apply these key branches of historical inquiry and their functions in the study of modern Australian history.

Subject Assessment

  • Written > Test/Quiz 1 - (30%) - Individual
  • Oral > Presentation 1 - (20%) - Individual
  • Participation > Class participation - (10%) - Individual
  • Written > Essay (including multi-draft) 1 - (40%) - Individual.

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.